Living with an iPad, or How My Smartphone Gets Smarter

The past week and a half with the iPad has been one part a revelation (battery life) and another part an effort in rediscipline (just because the battery lives longer, doesn’t mean there’s more content to consume that’s valuable). It is a different device, and in light of how its designed as a appliance, I can see where there are fans, fanatics, and detractors to it a lot clearer now.

Count me a fan, but not of the iPad. My Nokia N97 has actually become a bit more fun lately. Even to the point where my other Nokia mobiles are taking a bigger backseat when they are called into duty.

What do I mean? Well, simply, I’m becoming a smarter smartphone user. And I’m pushing my mobie to do things that emphasize not only its abilities from a communication end (messaging, voice, etc.), but also how it empowers me to save money, be more productive, and even enable the device itself to display some intelligence.

The intelligence piece is probably the more interesting part. You see, there are days where I’d like to be home browsing the web on my iPad. My mobile device is the only broadband connected device(s) in my home. Meaning I don’t have cable, cable Internet, DSL, or satellite. I don’t pick up any neighbor’s Wi-Fi either. It is just me and 3G via AT&T. I prefer it this way – considering what I pay per month, it makes sense that the connection (pipe) should go with me.

I’m leveraging this connection from time to time to the iPad or my other devices by enabling my N97 to be a hotspot with the Joikuspot application. I only use it for a bit since it drains the battery pretty quick – and I like that the iPad forces me out of the house to places where there are people and caffinated drinks. Thing is, I want this connection to do more.

I’m not content with manually turning on this connection, and then running across the room/apartment to my mobile when it beeps (rings or message comes in). I’d rather be able to check those messages from my iPad – or enable the call through my headset and the iPad – and then kind of live smarter.

To do something like this, I’d need to automate a few actions. For example, I’d need my mobile to turn to a profile (let’s call it Home) that turns on the Jokiuspot and Mobile Web Server apps. When the connection is made to the ad-hoc network with the iPad, I’d like a browser widow to open up to my mobile web server’s front page so that I could log in. That window would remain open, and if I need to attend to my mobile, I could do it from there.

And in the same respect, when I leave home, those applications would need to close, and shut that connection. Making it a manual process when away from home towards using the mobile web server on the N97 and the iPad to transfer information or do simple communications and PIM.

But, as you can tell from this illustration, its not the iPad that’s really doing anything here except being a spoke in the wheel. The simple action of freeing up my reading spaces from my mobile gives me a chance to teach my old dog (the smartphone running the oldest current platform of the smartphone leaders) some new tricks (a raw version of artifical intelligence based on locational and device contexts).

In doing this, my mobile would then too move into this realm of use we can call a connected appliance – just with the caveat that its intelligence is what will drive how the rest of my personal computing ecosystem would gain use.

When mobile gets smart like this, some really neat things can and should happen. I wonder if this is something that could be pulled off this weekend – would make for a really nice new shift 😉

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